Distinguished military leaders evaluate the essential requirements to insure U.S. national security for the next five to ten years. Generals and admirals of the army, the navy, the marines, and the air force describe the principal "risks," strategic obligations, shape, and sizing of forces; current budget constraints; and priorities and projections that must be considered if the United States is to respond to future military threats. Students, professionals, and scholars in military and media studies will benefit from this top-level appraisal of the defense posture needed for the nation's security in the 1990s. This dialogue with top-level authorities answers fundamental questions about U.S. defense needs in the near future. The opening chapters define a basic "defense insurance policy" and the likely risks and uncertainties in the 1990s. The next five chapters outline the army, navy, air, marine, and strategic forces needed in the future. Two chapters consider how to cope best with the proliferation of global missiles, with forward prepositioning and with air-lift and sea-lift requirements. Another chapter deals with the industrial base that is essential to meeting these defense needs. A final chapter sums up lessons learned from Desert Shield/Desert Storm, management and planning implications, and priorities in terms of modernization and technological advances and how best to improve force structure and forward prepositioning.